Cayman’s Chief Medical Officer, Dr John Lee, who has helped steer the country through one of the worst health crises it has ever faced, is leaving his post in January.
Dr Lee’s contract was up in May of next year, however he said he wanted to leave the islands a few months early to spend time with his family.
The Chief Medical Officer was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II for his outstanding contribution to health services in the Cayman Islands at the end of 2020 as a result of his efforts to help maintain the country’s health during Covid. His quiet and assured manner has been a source of comfort to many on island who felt they were safe in his professional hands.
Chief Officer in the Ministry of Health and Wellness, Nellie Pouchie, said: “We much appreciate the many sacrifices over the past year and half and do wish him and his family continued blessings and good health.”
The Ministry advised that a formal recruitment process would take place to fill the CMO post and a further update would be issued soon.
Dr Lee said he had been incredibly honoured and proud to work for the Cayman Islands Government as the Chief Medical Officer.
“You'll be aware that the biggest challenges came from a direction none of us would have imagined,” he said. “It has not all been about COVID-19; I have also had the chance to consider the health care system of the islands from a strategic position and I will share my views before leaving post.”
Dr Lee said the reason he was leaving early was that his parents' health was failing and although he had tried to support them from afar, they really needed him there and there was no one else able to help in this family matter. As a result, just over a month ago he shared his decision to leave his post in January 2022.
“Cayman has weathered the COVID-19 storm as it raged around us with determination, ingenuity and sheer hard work. We are now highly vaccinated as a community, but I hope those remaining would please consider protecting themselves further with the opportunity that vaccination brings,” he stated.